The research facilities ESS and MAX IV

operated together with


The vision for ESS and MAX IV is to create an international centre that is world-leading within materials science and life sciences. MAX IV became operational in 2016, and ESS plans to start delivering research in 2025.

Two facilities that complement each other

Both ESS and MAX IV enable the study of materials at atomic and molecular level, but they use different techniques: MAX IV creates the world’s brightest and most focused X-rays. ESS is a world-leading neutron source, which will be generating up to 100 times more neutrons for research than today’s leading facilities. The techniques used by the two research facilities complement each other, which gives researchers broader and more in-depth information about the various characteristics of the samples investigated.

The research as ESS and MAX IV can help us to find solutions to challenges in a wide range of areas. The facilities may, for example, contribute to better medicines with fewer side effects, new materials for energy storage, and technical breakthroughs in areas such as electronics, solar cells, transport and foods. We may find out new knowledge about very old materials, and develop new and more effective antibiotics.

ESS and MAX IV cornerstones in the Science Village

Over the next few years, the area around the facilities will be developed into a dynamic environment where the community, technology, research and innovation can meet. The Science Village will become an area that researchers from across the world will visit and be able to contribute to the ideas and sustainable solutions of the future.

Further major investments are planned for the area. The first activities will be established in 2023, and Lund University aims to have its first buildings in Campus Science Village completed during the second half of the 2020s. Vinnova has been commissioned by the government to establish a national technology park function, a neutral and inclusive arena that makes available and promotes the use of ESS and MAX IV. The technology park function will be based in Science Village. The aim is to maximise the societal value of the major research facilities for Sweden and for Europe.

Aerial view of ESS and MAX IV. Photo Perry Nordeng.

In Lund, the construction of ESS is in progress, which together with MAX IV will form the cornerstones of the Science Village. (Photo Perry Nordeng)

Podcast about ESS and MAX IV

In this podcast in English you will hear Yasemine Sassa, Daniel Söderberg and Lionel Trésaugues, Sprint Bioscience explain how MAX IV are, and ESS will be, useful tools in their research.




  1. ESS/MAX IV Summit online 2022

    Pandemic, war, climate crisis – the green and digital transition is more urgent and necessary than ever before. What is the role of ESS and MAX IV in this work?

  2. Swedish investments in ESS are producing good effects

    Swedish companies have done well in the competition for orders from ESS, and thousands of jobs have been created in Sweden and the EU because of the facility. This is shown in a new report with an analysis of the socio-economic effects of Swedish inv...

  3. The Swedish Research Council recruits Lars Heikensten to assist in ESS negotiations

    Lars Heikensten is now attached to the Swedish Research Council to provide support in the negotiations between the ESS member countries about the allocation of future operating costs for the facility. Lars Heikensten took up the position on 1 March, ...